Reloading .223 REM

Reloading .223 REM

This is a discussion on Reloading .223 REM within the Reloading forums, part of the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics category; Hi all Still pretty much a newb to reloading but getting there currently reloading 40sw and 45acp but would like to start reloading my 223 ...

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Thread: Reloading .223 REM

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array TomEgun's Avatar
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    Reloading .223 REM

    Hi all
    Still pretty much a newb to reloading but getting there currently reloading 40sw and 45acp but would like to start reloading my 223 rem anybody else reloading this and any advice? best type of bullets and primers for reloading for ar15?
    Thanks all
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    Ex Member Array Ram Rod's Avatar
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    Just a few bits of advice reloading for your AR15. The bullets you choose should be chosen for your barrel twist rate. Also realize that a 5.56 case can have less capacity than a .223 case, so a reduced charge may be wise in that case. I only reload for my bolt actions where I can make a difference in accuracy more. I only know of one guy locally that reloads for his AR15 and he takes his to Colorado every year for prairie dogs. I think he takes about 10K rounds with him for a couple weeks worth of hunting. Never get to talk to him much or about what he has and what works best for him and his methods.

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    Plus 1 for above in regards to the rifling rate in an AR.

    I have a Rem 788 in .223 I used to use for varmits (rockchucks, ground squirrels) in WA. Almost all my brass was Ex-military 5.56 and I never had an issue with it. I never used max loads, never saw the need (more noise, less accuracy). The only bad (?) part is removing the primer crimp. A swedger works best--faster, more consistant--but a hand reamer got the job done for me.

    It's been about 18 years since I last used that rifle, and I've forgotten what I loaded in it except that 55 grn Sierra BT spiral points would disintigrate a rock chuck at up to 250 yards.

    Any primer seemed to work fine. CCI was the one I used most (what the local store carried).
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    I have a stable of favorite loads for my AR 15 but it has a barrel with 1 in 12" twist rate. The 55 grain bullet is the heaviest I generally use for the rifle though it seems to shoot well with bullets to 62 grains. It appears that most AR 15s these days have barrels with quicker twist rates to accommodate the heavier .224 diameter component bullets. You really need to know the rate of twist is for the barrel on your AR 15. You likely have a quicker twist than 1 in 12" which will give you an edge in flexibility over my rifle.

    Just use due care in working up your loads, just as you do for your .40 and .45 production and the military cases won't be troublesome. I've used a lot of both military and commercial cases with perfect satisfaction. Stay away from gut-bustin' max loads without working up.
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    Senior Member Array TomEgun's Avatar
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    Thanks all will do !
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    Member Array Exsimguy1's Avatar
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    No matter where you get your brass, be aware of/check the length of your RESIZED case. More likely than not if it has been shot, particularly not in your gun, it will be at or over maximum length. If too long, bullet release can be hindered, raising pressure unpredictably. The 223 is no worse at this than any other bottleneck cartridge, except for a lot of available brass has been fired in large chambers.
    Just a word of warning, be careful, measure EVERY RESIZED case before loading. Trim to proper length with any preferred method, and have fun.

    Terry

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    Senior Member Array Ring's Avatar
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    TAC powder has some of the best speeds of any powder in all bullets weights, from 40gr to 80gr

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    Member Array Ghuqu2's Avatar
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    To save yourself a headache in the beginning you can get quality 100% processed (even primed) brass at Top Brass. It's ready to load, no trimming, resizing, or reaming, just reload. I have purchased from them when I was running behind loading for a Prairie Dog trip. Trimming rifle brass can be a major chore esp. large quantities. If you want to save some money (but spend time trimming), TJConevera's has mixed once fired brass cheap. It has been checked for cracks, had the primmer pocket reamed,and polished, but needs to be re-sized and trimmed. I reload for 2 ARs both have heavy 1:9 Wilson barrels. My prairie dog bullet of choice is a Sierra 55gn blitz king w/ 26.3 gr of Blc-2. For a plinking round I use Winchester (or any) 55 gr cannelured FMJ bullet over Blc-2. I like Blc-2 because it is usually lower cost than other powders, meters wonderfully, is accurate, and doesn't seem to be affected much by temp or elevation.

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    By all means exercise caution if using military brass. I loaded several hundred rds using military brass and the STARTING load of AA2230. I fired about 50 rds and upon returning home I was going to clean and resize when I noticed flattened primers on every one I fired, an indicator of excessive pressure. So if you use mil brass, reduce even the starting load.
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    Member Array Chainman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by automatic slim View Post
    By all means exercise caution if using military brass. I loaded several hundred rds using military brass and the STARTING load of AA2230. I fired about 50 rds and upon returning home I was going to clean and resize when I noticed flattened primers on every one I fired, an indicator of excessive pressure. So if you use mil brass, reduce even the starting load.
    The flatten primer can also indicate a loose primer pocket allowing the primer to creep out before the case is pushed back onto the bolt face flattening it. The Speer manual gives a lot of detail on pressure signs.

    I have used a mid range load of 4064 (25 grains) with 55 gr fmj for plinking. Loaded 26grs of 4064 with Speers 55 gr TNT bullet. Been working up a target load with Hornady 68 gr boat tails, the 4064 takes up to much space in the case for these long bullets when you get to the higher end of the load, so I have started with Varget but not shot these yet. Whatever you do work up slow and pay attention to your brass for pressure signs. And like others have said trim all the brass to start with.
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    New Member Array gunsphoenix's Avatar
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    Just a heads because I was searching on Google and this forum (being a newb) for top quality once fired brass sources and I had a great experience with this one local company here in AZ called Diamond K. Brass. They also have .223/5.56x45 Rifle Brass as well. Hope this helps.

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    Holy thread resurrection Batman.

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    For me it Hodgdon Varget powder, CCI primers, Brass Mil or com. If you are wanting to punch paper and do it as cheap s possible FMJ. For PD I use Hornady 55gr SP/can. Look at your reloading Manual. Reloaders seem to be brand particular. And guns are like people they like some bullets and power and not another. I have a Remington 700 AAC-SD 1:10 twist it likes the heavier bullets. 168 gr AMAX 3 rd 100 yd group best 3/8 of an inch. I bought some PMC 147 gr and was lucky to get it to stay on target. Pulled the bullets and loaded them with Varget and they will shoot 1 inch now. Had to be the burn rate on the powder PMC used.

  14. #14
    Distinguished Member Array coffeecup's Avatar
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    My AR has a 1-8 twist and is reasonably accurate (plinking) with 23.5 gr of WC844. For serious stuff I go with a heavyier bullet and a different powder--usually Varget.

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